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tv   MSNBC News Live  MSNBC  March 28, 2010 8:00am-9:00am EDT

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business brokers in your industry. to learn more about today's show click on our website. it's yourbiztv.com. you'll find all of today's segments with more information to help you grow your business. next week on opening day of the baseball season, we'll meet a entrepreneur whose one product was such a hit with clients they started wanting more. >> so i literally, you know, as green as i could be, call up my company and say, hey, can i buy a bunch of product and resell it? yeah, joe, that's allowed. you can definitely do that. >> see how he's knocked it out of the park by expanding his product lines above and beyond his original business plan. until then, i'm j.j. ramberg and, remember, we make your business our business.
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get paid faster. only from american express open. right now on msnbc, indied side the numbers. a new poll at the president's approval post health care review. bailout billions, the u.s. is ready to cash in on one of its biggest loans. what does it mean for you, the taxpayer? lights out -- some of the world's most famous landmarks go dark for an hour. what's behind the power outage? slime time. a guest gets an unpleasant surprise. details on the green goo ahead. good morning, everyone. i'm christina brown in for alex witt. welcome to "msnbc sunday." all of that plus big rain for parts of the country this week. first to the new poll that shows americans aren't yet onboard with the changes in the health care system. nbc's mike viqueira is at the white house with the numbers.
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good morning, mike. >> reporter: good morning, christina. there is a bit of good news in the poll if you want to look at the bright side. that is americans are very much engaged in this process here in washington, in this major policy change, and is it any wonder because it's been going on for a year and the passions are running high. one quarter of americans tried to contact their representative here in washington to give them their opinion about the health care legislation as it wound its way through the legislative process. many of those people were opposed. the people opposed are much more likely to have been involved and feel much more passionately about what's happening here in washington and most of those opposed want to see the laurie peeled and that does not speak well to democratic chances in the fall. let's take a look at some of the details. 46% support the changes in the health care system that the president is signing into law. 50% oppose. as far as the overall health care system and how they feel about that, 37% feel that it will get better as a result of this legislation.
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44% think it will get worse. 15% think it will remain about the same. now did republicans in congress make a good faith effort to cooperate with president obama and democrats on health care reform. that's the question, the gridlock, the partisanship or lack of, 63% say no. 31% say yes. the president's job approval has remained steady. 53% approve of the job he's doing. 43% disapprove. that's about the same as it has been for the past several months. christina? >> all right, thanks so much, mike viqueira, joining us live from the white house this morning. well, barbara bush is in a houston hospital this morning. the former first lady checked into the hospital yesterday after feeling ill for about a week. she is set to undergo a series of routine tests today. doctors don't expect anything serious. we will have a report from janet in a few minutes. this weekend sarah palin
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packs harry reid's hometown with more than 9,000 tea party activists kicking off a 42 city bus tour to send a message to washington. >> big government, big debt, obama, pelosi, reid's spending spree is over. you're fired. thank you so much. >> but the new "washington post" poll shows palin would face an uphill battle getting hired. just 37% of americans have a favorable opinion of palin. 55% have an unfavorable opinion. i'm joined now live by the white house correspondent for mcclatchy newspapers. there's a lot of meaning that can be derived from those numbers with approval numbers like that, can palin ever seriously be considered a candidate? >> oh, sure, christina. there's two interesting things at work in those numbers and i think we've seep this for some time with sarah palin. she's enormously popular with
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conservatives. that poll showed a 71% approval rating for sarah palin among conservatives. and you see that in the tea party which often overlapse with the self-identified conservatives. so she would be definitely a serious candidate for the republican presidential nomination. however, with only a 37% approval rating among the broader population, it suggests she would have a hard time as a general election candidate. that, of course, is all a couple of years in the future. you can see a two-track strategy. very strong in the nomination fight. might even dominate it at the outset. but might have a hard time in the general election. >> and what do you make of this weekend's palin/mccain reunion? are the two really of like minds, or is this possibly political payback as some people suggest? >> oh, certainly it's personal loyalty. sarah palin knows john mccain put her on the national stage. they don't agree on every issue. she is probably more in line
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with the tea party and conservatives than john mccain. right thousand she's the voice of opposition to barack obama. she was asked right after the rally to talk about some of the points where they disagree on issues and she sidestepped. she didn't want to talk about that at all. but for now it is clearly the student has become the teacher. she is now the dominant political force on that stage. it was quite a choreography to watch when she stepped forward. the crowd was rapturous and the media paid attention. when she was done and john mccain walked up, a lot of the tv cameras cut away and a lot of the people lost interest who were in the audience. >> and palin also spoke at a tea party rally yesterday before a crowd that, quite frankly, might be -- if they were voting in arizona, might be more inclined to support senator mccain's opponent j.d. hayworth. will it be possible for palin to bring people who really identify with the tea party and the mainstream republicans together? >> well, first, it's unclear,
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christina, how many votes, tea party votes, she can deliver for john mccain against j.d. hayworth, as you point out. a lot of the tea party voters are more in line with j.d. hayworth and more likely to challenge john mccain. i'm not sure her endorsement will bring a lot of the votes and j.d. hayworth said after this rally in north carolina, i look forward to sarah palin endorsing me after the primary, which she would, of course, if he were to win the republican nomination. could she bring them together? i don't know if she can. it's up to the nominee whether it's john mccain or j.d. hayworth. >> and going back to "the washington post" poll, it shows that 46% of americans agree with the tea party's positions on the issues. given what they know about them and then 40% disagree, palin is seen by many as the de facto leader of the movement. so why the disconnect between the tea party's popularity and her own? >> well, i mean, in the broader population they're not that far
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apart. we saw a 37% favorable rating for sarah palin and 47% agree with the tea party on the issues. what's striking to me about the 46% number is it's not that high. you'd think with all the polls showing opposition to the health care proposal being law in congress and opposition to policies and to the president that it might be a little higher. in fact, 46% agreeing with the tea party isn't that dissimilar from what mccain/palin got in '08 and that was a losing total then. >> all right, steve, thanks so much. for more headlines from the nbc news political unit, logon to firstrea firstread.msnbc.com. to rome now and no mention of the abuse scandal facing the church during palm sunday certifica services. this morning pope benedict led mass for thousands of people at the start of the church's most holy week.
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vatican officials are strongly defending the pope against accusations that he was once involved in the traps fnsfer of predator priest to another parish. nbc's anne thompson will join us from rome in a few moments. we will have a live report with her. meanwhile, there are new concerns involving iran this morning amid suggestions the country is preparing to build more nuclear sites. a report in "the new york times" says u.n. inspectors are now searching for evidence of an expanded nuclear program that follows recent comments by an iranian official who said the new enrichment plants would be built inside mountains similar to a plant revealed just a few months ago. in fact, six months ago the new reports come at a critical point for the white house which is trying to gain international support for tough new sanctions. and cities across the country went dark for an hour last night for a very important cause. here's a look at the vegas strip
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powering down one by one. many cities actually turned off nonessential lights beginning at 8:30 p.m. local time as they took part in the fourth annual earth hour. several u.s. cities took part including seattle, los angeles, and new york. and cities around the world also participated including cairo, athens, and london. organizers hope the event will re-energize efforts to reach a binding agreement of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. well, the national cherry blossom festival is in full swing in the nation's capital. and isn't this a beautiful picture? the blooming period for the trees runs through april 9th. hundreds of thousands of visitors are actually expected to catch a glimpse and organizers hope to top last year's record setting attendance. the festival runs through april 11th. for more on the weather, let's head to the weather channel's mike seidel live in atlanta. good morning, mike. what a beautiful, beautiful picture.
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>> yes. and get out early today. rain is moving in early for the cherry blossoms. a storm through the middle of the country head iing to the ea coast, causing a lot of issues there, monday and tuesday. here's the spin in the atmosphere. we've already had 56-mile-an-hour wind gusts clocked this morning northwest of nashville in clarksville, tennessee. and now the rain heads east and this line is going to fire up this afternoon. severe weather including the potential for hail. we have some small hail in south central kentucky. more showers getting back into nashville. the line heading to atlanta this afternoon will likely slow down flights. but look out late this afternoon, this evening, and then after you go to bed tonight in the carolinas we'll have a is he veer weather outbreak. we may have straight line wind damage and potentially some tornadoes. remember to have that noaa weather radio cranked up. here is the storm heading to the east coast. behind it the plains, the southwest looking good today. temperatures cracking 80 in los angeles and also phoenix. but the east coast is going to get slammed with another storm.
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wind, rainfall. christina, maybe four to five inches of rain. urban flooding. this storm will last monday into tuesday. it will be wednesday before it pulls out of the way and by that point it will turn out to be the wettest march on record. new york city will make a run for it and the bottom line is more long delays at the airports in the northeast and once again watch the rivers like the passaic outside new york city. they've come up about flood stage twice. they probably will again. the payoff is tremendous, christina. after we get the storm out of the way, thursday, friday into easter weekend, the eastern third will be basking in sunshine and temperatures across most of the entire area above 70 degrees. so some good weather coming from easter but in the short term stormy along the east coast monday and tuesday. back to you. >> thanks so much, mike, for giving us something to look forward to as we face these dark clouds and storms ahead. well, for more on the latest weather in your area, logon to weather.com. mechanics and engineers have
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moved a massive crane that slammed into a 25-story building in new york city last night. police shut down surrounding streets and evacuated nearby buildin buildings. no injuries have been reported. new york has had a series of crane accidents in recent years and in the summer of 2008 you might remember nine people were killed in two separate crane collaps collapses. on the other side of the break, we'll have a live update on former first lady barbara bush, hospitalized in texas. and could teen shoppers be leading the way out of economic recession? and we'll see if hot tub time machine lives up to the hype with a check of the weekend box office. there's a hospital where technology has a healing touch. there's a factory giving old industries new life. and there's a train that got a whole city moving again. somewhere in america, the toughest questions are answered every day. because somewhere in america,
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a memorial service is planned today for one of the deadliest traffic accidents in kentucky's history.
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the national transportation safety board says it's looking into several aspects of the crash that killed 11 people. >> was this just an isolated incident or is it a m manifestation of a bigger problem that we need to address? we want to find out why did this truck leave the road? we'll look at every aspect. nothing is off the table at this point. >> officials say a tractor-trailer crossed the median and slammed head-on into a family. two children survived. former first lady barbara bush has checked into a hospital in houston. she hasn't been feeling well for about a week. janet, what have you learned about her condition? >> reporter: christina, good morning. we are live where as you indicated the former first lady was admitted yesterday at 10:00 on the advice of her doctors for what they are calling a battery of tests after she reported not feeling well for the last
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several weeks. now a family spokesman is saying this is not serious. they are expecting her to be released in a day or two and point to her appearance on friday where she spoke to students and read books to them as part of her continuing commitment to literacy. this is her home hospital in houston. her husband, the former president, reportedly drove her here from their home, which is located about ten minutes away. she did spend nine days in this hospital a year ago this month for open heart surgery on an aortic valve and was here for a surgery in november of 2008 for a perforated ulcer. in this case, a family spokesman saying it is a case of her not feeling well the last several weeks. her doctors wanted to check her in and get to the source of what's wrong. back to you, christina. >> thank you, janet shamlian. and joining us live from houston we certainly wish her a very safe and quick recovery.
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well, some positive news on the economic front, retailers say teen shoppers are making a comeback and it's raising hopes of a broader upswing. a report in today's "los angeles times" indicates teen retailers have beaten sales expectations for the past two months. that's because teenagers are spending about 6% to 8% more compared to a year ago. abercrombie & fitch says it ended a 20-month streak of negative sales with an 8% increase in january. well, a new report in "the washington post" says the u.s. government is poised to sell its 27% stake in citigroup netting about $8 billion in profit. citigroup's bailout was the biggest on wall street and the windfall from the sale could be seen as validation of the rescue plan adopted by government officials during the height of the financial crisis. and joining me live right now is rick newman, chief business correspondent with "u.s. news &
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world report." so, rick, my question is $8 billion at stake here, does this ultimately prove that investing and doing these bailouts was a payoff for us? >> i hope this didn't lead future governments to say let's just invest in the banks every time. that's certainly not what we need. the government is making money off the banks for sure. and this was anticipated at the beginning of the whole bailout program and it just was a question of when will the government get its money back. now the government is going to lose money on the overall bailout. aig is a money loser for sure. unsure about the auto companies and we still have fannie and freddie. citigroup will be the last of the big banks to pay back the money they got. >> which company does the u.s. stand to make the most money from? >> it could be citigroup. remember that the other banks like jpmorgan chase and bank of america have already paid back the money with interest. so it's going to be the banks. this is great news for everyone who hated the bank bailouts.
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the government can hold on to the shares as long as it wants to. it doesn't want to hold on to the shares. we need the government to get out of the business of investing in banks and private companies in general. most agree about that. the government can sit and wait. >> talk to me about the obama administration's efforts to save the housing market, giving incentives to lenders to stem this huge flow of foreclosures. good idea? >> this is the main street bailout. the other part. the results from this are going to be much more ambiguous. it's very hard it to solve the foreclosure problem and they're now experimenting with something they really didn't want to do. let's remember this is the third effort it try to help. their first one was back in the bush administration in 2008. that didn't work. obama tried to revamp it. that didn't work. what they're going to try this time is they're going to try to get the banks to forgive payments so they're going to write down the principle of the
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loan. why should the bank write down yours and not mine? where is the cutoff? how do you decide who qualifies? who does not? it sounds like a complex set of rules to figure this out. but it's just really a can of worms. >> just like all the other things. time will tell. >> it's very hard to do. >> thank you, rick newman. still ahead, new calls for pope benedict to step down amid a controversy amid an abusive priest. and with health care reform in the bag, is immigration reform on deck? imagine skin so healthy, it never gets dry again.
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with the surge of thousands of u.s. troops into afghanistan, new data shows the number of americans killed there has rough ly doubled from the same time last year. 57 u.s. troops were killed in the country during the first two months of 2010. that's up from just 28 in january and february of the year before. the number of injured has also dramatically spiked, nearly tripling from the same period last year.
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well, this morning the catholic church is marking palm sunday amid tough questions about its handling of predator priests. the pope is kicking off a full week of ceremonies while vatican officials work to address the growing controversy both in europe and here in the united states. anne thompson is live in rome, italy, this morning. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, ch s christina. pope benedict celebrated palm sunday's mass in st. peters square. he spoke in several languages addressing the crowd that came from all around the world but he did not address the sexual abuse crisis that has put a cloud of suspicion over the catholic church as it begins its most l solemn week in the calendar year. this is the week when the church commemorates the death of jesus christ and then his rising from the dead on easter sunday. the pope will be very visible this week and many people are
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looking here to rome to see if the pope will say anything about this crisis. it is not -- it is no longer just an american problem. within the last couple of weeks there have been accusations of sexual abuse in the netherlands, in germany -- that's where pope benedict comes from -- in ireland, in france, and pope benedict is now getting caught up in the scandal in part because there are accusations that when he was a cardinal that he looked the other way in two cases. one in munich and one in wisconsin. there are people who believe he should have stepped in. should have punished known pedophile priests, and he did not. and that has some people wondering just what the pope knew and when he knew it and they're calling for more transparency. so far the pope has not answered that call. christina? >> all right, thank you, anne. and coming up, a tea party founder discusses the
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controversy surrounding its ties with the gop. and the last surviving number one seed, duke, sat out for a spot in the final four. finish what you started today. for the aches and sleeplessness in between, there's new motrin pm. no other medicine, not even advil pm, is more effective for pain and sleeplessness. new motrin pm. you can label as "different." like janice. uh-huh. yeah. fashion deficient. and tom... copy incapable. it's open kimono time. looking good, dan. oh, we want to make sure all our ducks in a row. yeah. volume control syndrome. but we focus on the talent and skill that each person... brings to the team. i mean, no one's really concerned about labels. not even mine. labels get in the way. disabilities rarely do. visit thinkbeyondthelabel.com to evolve your work force. [ gasps ] no!
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msnbc is the place for politics. a new poll is spotlighting the uneasy alliance between the tea party movement and the gop. according to "the washington post," 23% of americans say the tea party has too much influence on the gop. 24% say it has too little. and 38% say the tea party is exerting just the right amount of influence. joining me live right now the president of the tea party nation, the organization that hosted the first-ever national tea party convention. good morning, jetson. what do you think about the tea party's impact on the gop? >> well, to be honest, i don't
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think we've had enough impact on the gop. we need to get in and affect policy and affect candidates to get people out who we don't want who are not helping us, people like john mccain. >> do you want to see the tea party emerge as a third party? couldn't that just possibly splinter the gop and end up representing democrats? >> absolutely not. my personal opinion i'm militantly against a third party. third parties in this country do not work. it would be a disaster for our movement. i don't think the gop should take over the tea party movement. the tea party movement should take over the gop. we return it to the history and the tradition of reagan republicanism. >> when you talk about the tea party movement influencing the gop possibly not enough, sarah palin spoke at john mccain's rally and basically said that the group that was there in arizona was part of that spirit
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of the tea party movement. he's there. she's speaking for him. how is he not part of that? >> well, john mccain has never been a part of the tea party movement. he is, for all practical -- he is a liberal. there's no other way to describe it. i understand sarah palin going out there and speaking for john mccain. there's a lot to be said for loyalty. but there's also a point -- and i can tell you within the tea party movement, i've talked to a lot of people who have privately started expressing a lot of concerns about governor palin because she is out there supporting john mccain so much. and that's a real problem. >> i want to draw your attention to what frank rich writes in today's "new york times." he says the health care bill is not the main source of this anger and never has been. it goes on to say, it's merely a handy excuse. the conjunction of a black president and a female speaker of the house topped off by a wise latina on the supreme court and a powerful gay congressional
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committee chairman with fears of disenfranchisement among the dwindling and threatened minority in the country no matter what policies were in place. what's your reaction? >> i think frank rich is living proof of life after brain death. give me a break. that has got to be one of the stupidest comments i've heard in the last ten years. people are upset in this country in the tea party movement because we don't want socialism. we don't want the government deciding our health care issues. we don't like the policies of barack obama. we don't want immigration reform that's the euphemism for amnesty. we don't want universal registration that would bring voter fraud to a national level. we simply don't want anything this group is doing. i like to refer to them as the obama/pelosi/reid axis. they are the most incompetent group of leaders this country has ever had and the soon earp we can vote them out, the better we'll be. >> the perception, though, that members of the tea party movement have a very strong,
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pow powerful element, a fringe element, that possibly undercuts the tea party's message, what do you have to say to the more extreme elements whether you agree that they represent the group or party as a whole, the perception is that they are certainly part of it and have a significant voice? >> well, you know, we hear this myth of the tea party fringe and i've been to a lot of tea party events over the last year, because i got started with a tea party movement in nashville back last february and there's been a couple of people out there but a couple of them have been plants from the other side, but this, quote, fringe, is pretty much a creation of the media and for the most part it does not exist. are there a couple of people who are off on the deep end who claim to be a part of the tea party movement? sure. and you can probably list them on one hand. the great majority of people who are involved in the tea party movement are patriotic americans. they love their country. they don't want their country to be a socialist country.
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they don't like the way their country is going and what we're doing is doing what the constitution says. we're petitioning our government, we're assembling peacefully to express our displeasure and we are being patriotic americans and there just really is not a fringe group out there that a lot of people keep talking about. >> well, there's certainly no shortage of energy. there's no shortage of individuals that talk about being frustrated with the state of affairs right now. how do you transform that energy and actually make it an organization that, one, has greater influence in the gop you're saying it doesn't have enough of and also shows up at the polls? >> there's two words, get involved. i think -- this is my message to everybody who is in the tea party movement. number one, go get involved with the republican party at the precinct level, at the various levels. get involved. run for office. get involved in the political process. get involved in campaigns with
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candidates you support and even think about running yourself. there's this myth that the tea party is sort of nonpartisan. guess what, we have a two-party system here in the country and the democratic party has told the tea party movement to go to hell so it leaves us the republican party. get involved. >> thank you very much, judson phillips joining us this morning. >> thank you. while the tea party activists meant to slam harry reid in his hometown in nevada, his supporters lined the streets chanting and holding signs as conservative activists drove through. reid was about 60 miles away, though, campaigning at an nra event in las vegas where he laughed at the suggestions from republicans that the health care bill is unconstitutional. >> there isn't a constitutional scholar in america that thinks the constitutional direction is going to bear any fruit. this law is totally constitutional. >> and senator reid showed off his shooting skills at the grand opening of a shooting park in las vegas.
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he actually helped secure the land and financing for the park. and supporters of immigration reform took to the streets in california and texas this weekend calling for speedy action on comprehensive reform but some lawmakers say so much time has been taken up with health care reform and immigration reform bill in the senate may have to wait until next year. well, some amazing images to show you out of iceland where the island's fifth biggest volcano is erupting. the potentially dangerous situation for icelanders so far has been a relatively safe and spectacular show. nbc's jim hmaceda has more. this is putting on quite a show. tell us about that. >> reporter: that is right, christina. not only has it been a boone for
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scientists but for trekkers and tourists. even in iceland a volatile mass of earthquakes and volcanos that sits on a fault line this is something special. a spectacle of fire and ice not seen in almost 200 years. as the island's fifth largest volcano erupted near one of its biggest glaciers spewing a mix of arc and steam almost a mile into the sky. at first fearing massive floods from melting ice, the government called a state of emergency, quickly evacuating hundreds of rural families including this 9-year-old girl. if there was a flood, i thought our animals would die, she said. i was a little afraid. but one week later, most icelanders have returned home. the lava still flowing but stable. the only flooding in sight, tourists trying to get a better view of a once-in-a-lifetime show. >> it's amazing. we would like to go even closer. >> i was really hoping every day something like that would happen.
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>> reporter: still, from the air and the ice, scientists are eyes on. they know that over the last millennium all three eruptions here have triggered a dangerous volcano nearby. >> the authorities are on full alert and while this eruption is ongoing there will be -- we will monitor it very closely. >> reporter: for now nature seems to be conspiring to avoid disaster. international flights canceled or delayed have returned to normal. instead a living laboratory for those seeking clues to the earth's mystery deep below. for the rest of us an awesome sight, one scientists say could last years. now volcanoes like earthquakes are totally unpredictable so this eruption could end tomorrow. what we do know, the last time it erupted back in 1821, it was what they called a lazy eruption
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lasting for two whole years. think about the tourism that could bring to a cash-strapped iceland. back to you. >> all right, jim maceda, thank you. a quick look at your economic headlines. stocks finishing mixed on friday after the south korean chip incident rattled investors. on monday investors will continue to keep a close eye on european debt problems after 16 nations agree to fund a bailout for greece. a flurry of economic reports are due out as well. we'll get numbers on march auto sales and manufacturing. and those all important march unemployment numbers set to be released on friday. a surprise this weekend in the battle at the box office. the much hyped comedy "hot tub time machine" isn't doing as well as projected. early estimates show the film in third place behind "alice in wonder land" and "how to train
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your dragon." and even though it's not on top of -- it's not on top, many critics do agree "time machine" actually delivers nonstop laughs. >> yo, i have a question. >> the dude has a cassette player. >> relax. i'm sure there's a reasonable explanation. >> excuse me, what color is michael jackson? >> black. >> and joining me live right now is the editor at large with "life & style weekly." it's not doing well at the box office number wise but, hey, it's funny. what's going on here? >> it is and it has a lot of industry analysts scratching their heads. they were aiming for a hangover vibe and while it was expected to fall short of that, it was expected to do at least $20 million and put it on par with things like "forgetting sarah marshall." if you get past the grossout humor, it has a lot of '80s
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humor. people are saying that maybe the problem came with all the 3d competition this weekend and also the fact that this was really specifically marketed mostly to guys instead of guys and girls. >> okay. well, the number one film this weekend, the early estimate is how to train -- i like the title -- "how to train your dragon." let's watch a clip. >> now get me down. >> toothless, down, gently. see, nothing to be atrade of. toothless, what is wrong with you? >> all right, you talked about the power of the 3d film. what has the reaction been like for this one? >> overwhelmingly positive. critics absolutely love it. audiences love it. it's based on a really popular children's book. of course family fare does really well at the box office and the 3d effects are amazing. you have dragons soaring over your head and buzzing by. it's so much fun.
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of course it's the tale of a young boy who is a bit of a misfit who defies viking tradition to befriend a dragon. >> thanks so much, dawn. more to come. in the end, who will come out on top in the battle over health care reform and a check of your sports headlines including the race for the final four spots in the ncaa. powered by the wind on the plains. there's a hospital where technology has a healing touch. there's a factory giving old industries new life. and there's a train that got a whole city moving again. somewhere in america, the toughest questions are answered every day. because somewhere in america, more than sixty thousand people spend every day answering them. siemens. answers.
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first to the final four and first ever for butler university, the bulldogs yesterday upsetting kansas state, 63-56 in the west regional final. they will play the winner of today's game between michigan state and baylor. west virginia's also going to the final four. the mountaineers downing kentucky 73-66 in the east regional final. and with yesterday's losses, president obama's choices to reach the final four have all been eliminated. the president's bracket now a total bust. last year he picked the winner.
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to politics now and what the success of the health reform push means to democrats going forward even as the president continues his effort to get americans to accept the health care changes that are in store. i'm joined live now from washington with eleanor clift, contributing editor for "newsweek" magazine. eleanor, why did the push for health care reform legislation work this time rather than before? >> well, i think there are probably a lot of answers to that. one of them is this president's perseverance and his willingness really to turn a lot of the authority over to congress so that the chieftains on capitol hill had a vested interest in passing something. the last time we had a serious push for health care during the clinton years the president and hillary clinton developed a plan in the white house and sent it up to capitol hill. and the then chairman of the senate finance committee held
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1,372 pages, held the bill aloft and let it drop to the ground with a loud thud to let them know what he thought of it. the clintons didn't even get a bill out of a single committee on capitol hill. so while this process looked very messy from the outside and has extracted a huge political cost on both the president and the democrats, they did in the end get a bill and now they have to convince the american people that this is a good thing. >> wasn't it also a numbers game, overwhelming majority in the senate for the democrats, the majority as well for the democrats in the house? how big of a role does that play? >> well, that definitely plays a role but president clinton had similar numbers although i don't think he had the 60 votes in the senate. in the end president obama didn't have the 60 votes in the senate either. but this president did have a lot of trouble rallying his own democrats and because the republicans basically were
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opposed in unison, all the deal making went on among the democrats. and i think, again, that's what has left sort of a bad political aftertaste because of the deals that were necessary to bring this bill to fruition because this president promised he would change washington. and it looked like washington operated in the same old way to achieve this bill. but then again, they did succeed. and this is the first time the congress has been able to pass legislation really of this size and of this change to the social contract in this country. so i think it's important to show the people that government actually can perform. >> and will this momentum translate now to other initiatives, climate change, immigration? how will he be able to tackle more potentially divisive issues now? >> well, the next big issue that's up is reform of the financial services community. and i think you're going to see the white house frame that as do
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you want to stand with wall street and the banks or with the consumers and i think you're going to see some defections and they will get legislation and that is important to try to prevent the kind of meltdown that we saw over the last two years. climate change is going to be tougher but you do have at least one republican onboard, south carolina lindsey graham, who has proved to be a pretty good ally for this white house. so i think you're going to see some defections on the republican side particularly on economic matters because with unemployment still so high and country really hurting, i think republicans will want to be seen as work iing with democrats on some of the jobs measures and we already saw that in one jobs bill and i think the democrats will figure out other jobs measures that will attract republican support. i think the rhetoric is still going to be poisonous. it's as though the two sides
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hate each other but they will accomplish something. >> thank you very much, eleanor clift, contributing editor for "newsweek." thank you for joining us this morning. and still ahead this hour, tiger woods stepping back into the spotlight next week at the masters. just how badly does the pga need tiger back on the tour? [ female announcer ] sometimes you need tomorrow to finish what you started today. for the aches and sleeplessness in between, there's new motrin pm. no other medicine, not even advil pm, is more effective for pain and sleeplessness. new motrin pm. wow!
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pop star katie perry got quite a surprise at last night's kids choice awards. the singing sensation was presenting an award when, well, take a look. >> i don't know, is it your birthd birthday? >> yeah, it's my birthday. >> it is? >> oh, my goodness. after getting slimed, perry was able to regroup and continue with the show. and here are the top winners. miley cyrus won for best movie actress for her role in "hannah
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montana." taylor lautner for "new moon" and the favorite movie award went to alvin & the chipmunks: the squeakquel. after months of near total isolation, tiger woods is preparing to step back into the public spotlight. the golf superstar will hold a news conference a week from tomorrow just days before he plays his first tournament since a november crash led to revelations that he cheated on his wife. and joining us now is sportswriter dave ziron. tiger has addressed the media twice so far and since these revelations came out, and both times he limited the access. will he have to answer questions fully this time around? >> first of all, i think there are a lot of women out there who wouldn't mind seeing tiger woods slimed at the press conference if he says i don't know to a question. look, he's doing this press conference -- it's an admission
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and it's also payback. it's an admission the media strategy just has not worked. when tiger did his first, quote/unquote press conference in february, he didn't allow questions. and it so incensed the pga writers association that they actu actually boycotted the event. then he did those two bizarre interviews with the golf channel and espn. i've never seen interviews like this in my life. five-minute interviews where he's standing up outside as if he could run for the hills at a moment's notice and where he also said those three words, i don't know or i'm not going to talk about it, basically taking the fifth to a whole series of questions. and now he's admitting that, look, it just hasn't worked and he's actually taking the advice of golf legend arnold palmer who said, look, tiger just has to get up there in front of the media and say what he has to say. it's also payback to the pga and the head of the golfers association. they have stood with tiger every step of the way in this process and now tiger's going to give them what they want which is a
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news conference to try to clear the air before the masters. >> and the news conference that will certainly have everyone watching. it does seem, though, as though tiger's taking his public return in stages. is he really doing it the right way? is this the right approach? >> i've said from the very beginning that it's not the right way. there are two kinds of people on this earth. there are those who would rather gargle with gasoline than hear anything else about tiger woods, and there are those who just want him to answer questions and move on. and, instead, they have taken the media strategy of letting the air out of the balloon slowly and shortly. i don't think that satisfies anybody out there and i think he's much better off either telling the world, look, this is between me and my family. it's my own private business. i've broke no laws. leave me alone. or exhaust yourself. ask me questions until you're hoarse and let's move on. >> how bad do

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